What Our Graduates are Doing

We recently surveyed our first 100 graduate student alumni to find out where they are and what they are doing.  Here is what they had to say...

  • What is your highest degree attained?*
    Bachelor's Degree: 38.5%
    Master's Degree: 32.7%
    Ph.D.: 1.9%
    Currently working on Master's: 19.2%
    Currently working on Ph.D.: 7.7%

    *The MOSS graduate program began as a one-semester certificate program in 2003. The program became a self-contained Master's degree in 2011. This explains why not all of our students have earned a Master's degree.
  • What category best describes your current occupation?
    Classroom Teaching: 21%
    Outdoor Teaching: 21%
    Research: 13%
    Natural Resources/Management: 13%
    Other: 12% (sustainable business, engineer, finance, grassroots activist, technical assistant, administration)
    Student: 8%
    Outdoor Recreation: 6%
    Higher Education: 4%
    Counseling: 2%
  • What is your current title and where do you work?

    Our alumni have found a variety of employment and educational opportunities after completing our program. Here are just a few examples:

    Field-based and Informal Education:

    1. School Liaison - Oregon Coast Aquarium
    2. Garden Manager - Blaine County Hunger Coalition & Hemingway Elementary School, ID
    3. Director of the Sacajawea Interpretive, Cultural, & Educational Center, ID
    4. Lead Naturalist - Pathfinder Ranch, CA
    5. Lead Environmental Educator - Palouse-Clearwater Environmental Institute, ID
    6. Program Manager - Backyard Harvest, ID
    7. Program Instructor - Keystone Science School, CO
    8. Program Assistant - McCall Outdoor Science School, ID
    9. Community Forester - Tree Pittsburgh
    10. Education Curator - Pocatello Zoo, ID
    11. Project Specialist - St. Alexius Medical Center Education Center, MN
    12. Program Coordinator - Cottonwood Institute, CO
    13. Communications & Outreach Manager at Valley Advocates for Responsible Development, ID
    14. Program Coordinator – Sawtooth Interpretive & Historical Association, ID
    15. Outward Bound Instructor and Public School Teacher, VA
     Higher Education:
    1. Outreach & Education Coordinator at Office for Sustainability - University of Virginia
    2. Graduate student - Landscape Architecture with focus on outdoor learning environments
    3. Doctoral student and co-founder of the Arizona Sky School - University of Arizona
    4. Faculty - Northern Arizona University
    5. Law Student - Harvard Law School, MA
    6. Water Quality Specialist - Texas A&M University
    7. Post-doctoral Fellow - NASA Jet Propulsion Lab, CA
    8. Teaching Assistant - University of Idaho
    9. Research Assistant - University of Idaho
    10. Natural Science Instructor - Lewis Clark State College, ID
    11. Extension Faculty and Educator - University of Idaho
    12. Director of eLearning - The University of Montana Western

    Formal Classroom Education: 

    1. Science Teacher - Denver Public Schools
    2. Outward Bound Instructor and Public School Teacher, VA
    3. Title I Paraprofessional - Salmon School District, ID
    4. Elementary Teacher - McCall-Donnelly School District, ID
    5. High School Teacher - McCall-Donnelly School District, ID


    1. Youth Engagement Specialist - Nez Perce-Clearwater National Forest, ID
    2. Environmental Engineer - Minnesota Pollution Control Agency
    3. Natural Resource Specialist - National Parks Service, ID
    4. Hydrologic Technician - Bureau of Reclamation, CA
    5. Recreation Supervisor - City of McCall, ID
    6. Forestry Technician (Fire) - US Forest Service
    7. Community Environmental Management Volunteer - Peace Corps
    8. Fish and Wildlife Technician - Alaska Department of Fish and Game


    1. Environmental Scientist - HDR, Inc.
    2. Consultant, NY
    3. Lead Restoration Technician - Palouse-Clearwater Environmental Institute, ID
    4. Supervisory Forester at Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation, OR
    5. Environmental Engineer at Advanced Mixed Waste Treatment Project, UT
  • What were some of the most valuable things that you took with you from your time at MOSS?
    "I gained a deep passion for teaching.  I probably would not be a classroom teacher today without being involved in MOSS for several years."

    "I was always taken out of my comfort zone and pushed to do my best in situations I had never been in before."

    "How to listen and communicate effectively in a group setting is something that I still practice in every aspect of my life. Additionally, the importance of practicing good expeditionary behavior is something I am still very conscious of when I am participating in any personal or work outdoor trip. I feel fortunate to have cultivated many friendships from MOSS that are still very present in my life. I look forward to continue to embark on outdoor adventures with these people."

    "I learned what my style of teaching was and how to apply it in different settings. I also learned new, creative ways to teach science and how to make learning more student centered. Examples of what I took into the classroom include water quality investigations and taking students to a river to study macroinvertebrates."

    "MOSS gave me the confidence to teach effective inquiry-based science, and dramatically helped to develop my leadership and teamwork skills via interactions with other staff, schools, and scientists."

    "...when I look back at MOSS, it is definitely the highlight and most important experience that I've ever had. I think that the exposure to teaching and the EE field in general was beneficial. It has shaped what I have wanted to pursue. I think that the exposure to various teaching techniques, styles, and settings was very beneficial. I could write forever about all of the little pieces that I have gained from a year to MOSS that I use in my everyday life but I think that the top 3 things are the importance of community, exposure to the EE field, and exposure and introduction to teaching."

    "MOSS was a huge growth opportunity for me. It got me out of my comfort zone and into teaching topics I was just learning about myself. I definitely made mistakes along the way, but I think that's where a lot of learning happens. I also met some wonderful people."

    "MOSS gave me dynamic and invaluable experience leading experiential outdoor education programs in a wide range of outdoor settings and within a wide range of ecological topics. Learning to teach the curriculum developed by MOSS's veteran educators set the stage for solid environmental educating, while designing new curricula for winter residential programs gave us the opportunity to apply the theoretical knowledge of our coursework alongside our hands-on experience teaching in the field. I wish every environmental educator I have worked with was able to go through a training as strong as MOSS."

    "My MOSS experience was invaluable. It gave me significant experience in curriculum development and teaching which is what I do daily in my current job. It also strengthened my technical knowledge in natural resource and management issues which has also been valuable."
  • What advice would you give prospective students?
    "Anyone with an interest in learning and a desire to improve their communication skills can benefit from the training and experience MOSS offers, and but I would most seriously recommend the program to those who plan to pursue a path as an educator. And, make the most of your summer placement - Idaho is great place!"

    "This will be a life changing experience, don't miss out on it."

    "Go for it! It's definitely worth it, no matter what your career goals!!"

    "Do it! Do it! Do it! And opt for a yurt over a cabin. Yurt life is far more adventurous and ultimately makes a much cooler 'where I used to live' story."

    "Keep your eyes and mind wide open during this experience. There is much to learn and absorb during your year at MOSS. You will meet awesome people who will inspire and drive you. I continue to encounter a wide variety of circumstances where I can apply knowledge gained at MOSS, which is exciting."

    "The MOSS experience for me was wonderful and one that I will never forget. From community living to teaching and taking graduate classes it is a unique experience and one that I continue to draw from on a regular basis. Aside from that, the friendships made and personal experiences (skiing, hiking, etc) were some of the highlights of my experience."

    "Just do it. Do anything and everything. Every opportunity that comes your way while at MOSS, take it and give it your all! You won't regret it! Also, get to know your MOSSmates...they will be some of the greatest people you will ever meet!"

    "MOSS can transform your outlook on science and education - if you are ready to fully commit a year to this goal, apply!"

    "Do it! You won't regret it. Go into it wanting to learn and pursue every opportunity that you can to learn as much as possible, plus enjoy some quality beach time and work hard to create a solid community of MOSSers."

    "If you get a chance to do MOSS I would do it. You'll learn a lot, teach kids some valuable information and likely come out with skills that will help you in your future career (whatever that may be). I feel like I'm writing exactly what a MOSS pamphlet would love to have printed in it but I really feel that way. I loved my time at MOSS, I loved the mountains, the snow, the people, the teaching, the kids and challenge of it all. I'm working as an engineer right now but because of my experience at MOSS I don't think I will be a engineer forever. I can see myself going back into teaching/education in the future directly because of my experience at MOSS. Also: My past two employers spent more time asking me about my time in AmeriCorps during my interviews than any relevant skills I might have. Employers want people with people skills not just robots who can do calculations and AmeriCorps is a great way to show you might have those skills."

    "If you're looking to gain experience as an outdoor science educator while boosting or acquiring theoretical, pedagogical and ecological knowledge that will serve as either a foundation or stepping stone to a career in environmental education - this is the program for you. I've worked with a lot of great educators, and it's hard to think of many who have had such a devotion to researching, maintaining and teaching best practices in environmental education from the very start of their program."

    "If you have a chance to complete the graduate program at MOSS, I would highly encourage it. It will be an experience you'll remember for the rest of your life and will provide you tools that you'll be able to apply in your eventual career."

    "Don't pass up the opportunity to spend a year at MOSS!"